What is a COVID-19 virus test?
- A COVID-19 virus test is a RT-PCR test that detects RNA that is unique to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. The specimen for this testing is generally collected using a nasopharyngeal swab. COVID-19 virus test results are positive during active infection and negative for individuals that have not been infected in individuals that have been infected but whose immune system has effectively cleared the virus.
What is RT-PCR?
- RT-PCR stand for reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, a laboratory method used to detect specific RNA sequences. This is a high sensitivity laboratory method that utilizes polymerase chain reaction to amplify specific genetic targets RT-PCR generally produces results within a few hours.
What are COVID-19 antibodies?
- Antibodies are one way an individual’s immune system fights infections. People with a healthy immune system develop antibodies against COVID-19 virus shortly after infection. These antibodies are detectable by laboratory tests after about one week. In most people the antibodies clear the COVID-19 infection after about two weeks. While the antibodies are detectable later than the virus, they may help establish the initial diagnosis of a symptomatic patient, and offer additional benefits, such as:
- Antibodies indicate an individual’s resistance to the virus and reinfection. If the virus is no longer detectable these people present a minimal risk of spreading the virus.
- Contact tracing. Antibodies persist long after an infection is resolved, so COVID-19 antibodies can help individuals and health care practitioners trace back to the source of the COVID-19 and identify individuals that may have been exposed to the infection in the past
What is SARS-CoV-2?
- SARS-CoV-2 is the abbreviation for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, the virus that causes coronavirus disease-2019, also known as COVID 19 or novel coronavirus disease.
What is a chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA)?
- An immunoassay is a test that measures biomarkers through binding with antibodies and/or antigens. Chemiluminescence allows these reactions to be detected through emission of light. The KSL COVID-19 antibody tests utilize a high throughput chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA) instrument to detect these antibodies.
What can my COVID-19 test results tell me?
- Consult this table for basic interpretation of results. This is a guide. Please consult your healthcare provider assistance with your diagnosis and more detailed information.
How much does the test cost and who pays for it?
- The cost for COVID-19 Virus Testing by RT-PCR (CPT Code U0004) or COVID-19 IgG, IgM, IgA Antibody Testing by CLIA (CPT Codes 86769 x3) is $100 per test, plus $25 for specimen collection ($125 total for each test). Testing may be covered by private insurance, Medicaid, Medicare and other governmental reimbursers. If you have specific questions, please call KSL at 1-800-960-1080 to speak with a representative.
Does insurance cover this test?
- Insurance will generally only cover testing for patients with suspected COVID-19 exposure and symptoms consistent with COVID-19. For all other COVID-19 testing needs—including travel, pre-operative, and elective COVID-19 testing—please contact your insurance company.
Are these tests approved by FDA?
- The COVID-19 tests currently offered by KSL are approved by FDA through Emergency Use Authorization (EUA).
How can I be tested?
- KSL offers local specimen draws and specimen collection kits for physicians and health care providers throughout the US. Kits may be ordered by calling 1-800-960-1080 or completing a request on the website.
KSL Diagnostics offers services to help manage COVID-19 and return to normal.